As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Forward to Happiness Radio

Forward to Happiness Radio

Saturday, December 28, 2019

To Be Happy, Anticipate Disappointment

It may sound odd, but one of the lessons I have learned in my journey in discovery of keys to happiness is that we must anticipate disappointment.  One of the reasons that we get so angry or depressed is that we expect things to be better than they are, and that is a GOOD thing if it leads us to make healthy positive choices.  However, the reality is that the vast majority of others will disappoint us, as well.

A good illustration of this is driving.  When I was a driver (and will be again), I would often get angry at other drivers....a lot.  It seems you cannot drive a single trip in Tulsa without someone cutting you off, riding your bumper, running a light, or more.  Numerous times, I would have died, if I had not been driving defensively, as they taught us to do...meaning, looking to make SURE the other person is not running the light or stop sign and etc.  I had to ANTICIPATE the other drivers breaking the rules to manage traffic and not get angry.  Then, when they DID break the rules, it was just another...bad Tulsa driver.

In the same way, parents of kids learn the same lesson.  We tell them over and over and over to pay attention or follow the rules, and time and time again they break them.  Eventually, parents learn that if they don't want to be stressed and disappointed all the time, they need to just EXPECT that they will break the rules and prepare for that to happen.  It also means limiting their risk of doing so as much by giving less opportunity.

How much of our lives would be improved by applying this reality across the board?  In the dating world, many get stressed because of experiences that they encounter.  I remember my times in the dating apps and world getting SO FRUSTRATED, because it seemed that every person I met on there was only driven by themselves and would often lie to get the first date or dates, only to reveal themselves to be different as time progressed.  Indeed, that was how I ended up with my ex.

Imagine if we instead approached dating with the mentality that most people were lying about something and were just looking for personal pleasure.  After all, it must be noted, they didn't join the app to make OTHERS happy.  Then, when they did something bad or appeared different, we can just chalk it up to ....another bad date ..and move on.  The same applies to workplaces or any interaction with others, especially if you don't fit stereotypes or have personal uniqueness.  Most of the time, others are looking FOR the stereotype, and your variance will be at best a momentary trend of interest. 

To be sure, there are exceptions, and you will find others of quality to have in your life in various ways, though I wouldn't say look for any one person to satisfy all needs.  It is still NOT good to stay in a harmful relationship, and it is still best to limit time to those that disappoint most.  However, if our condition on interacting with others is that they follow the rules and do things we like, we will find ourselves living on some Montana mountaintop, all by ourselves.  And, that wouldn't make us very...happy.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Prime Free Trial